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What is this?

Recent literature on COVID-19 is highly variable in scope, quality, and applicability to the front-line physician. In a time where information and time are valuable resources, there must be a resource that provides dependable primary and secondary literature so that clinical decisions can be made with more confidence.

This project aims to provide a way to explore higher-quality peer-reviewed current literature on COVID-19 that has been curated via a systematic review approach. We hope that our work supports evidence-based clinical decision making in these uncertain times.

This is a work in progress. Expect more improvements and features over the coming days to weeks.

The Team

We are a group of senior medical students at McMaster University, Canada, interested in making a difference in our current circumstances. Our combined roles consist of: leading and organizing the direction of the project, reading and reviewing a high number of publications, and delivering our work through a front-end platform, which you are on right now.

Our core team is: Becky Jones, Daniel Levin, Hannah Kearney, Jasper Ho, Jillian Howden, John Kim, Maya Amar, Meghan Glibbery, and Sara Markovic.

We are lucky to also have Nicholas St Germaine, Angelica Rivas, Sabrina Lin, Zachary Barkhouse, Jenny Zhu, and Sarah Zhao on our team as additional reviewers.

The project was conceptualized and is supervised by Dr. Mark Crowther MD, MSc, FRCPC, McMaster University.

Contact Us

Find us for any reason at Inquiries regarding this website or its back-end can be directed to Jasper Ho (GitHub) or the general e-mail contact.


Terms of Use

This site is created as an information resource for physician and health care provider use. The accuracy of content contained herein is not guaranteed; the use of this summary tool does not substitute for clinical experience and expertise. We expressly disclaim responsibility, and shall have no liability, for any damages, loss, injury, or liability whatsoever suffered as a result of your reliance on the information directly contained in this site.

If you are not a physician or other health care provider, this tool is not to be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. If you have health concerns, particularly related to COVID-19, please seek professional health care.

Search Methods

Our current PubMed search strategy is:

((((("COVID-19" [Supplementary Concept]) OR "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" [Supplementary Concept]) OR COVID-19[Title/Abstract]) OR coronavirus 19[Title/Abstract]) OR SARS-COV-2[Title/Abstract] OR wuhan coronavirus AND 2019/12:2030[pdat]) OR 2019-nCoV OR 2019nCoV OR COVID-19 OR SARS-CoV-2)

Inclusion Criteria

No strict inclusion criteria were established; the purpose of this literature review is to provide high-yield pertinent research to the front-line clinician across a breadth of areas, specifically oriented towards the Ontario/Canada/North American context of COVID-19.

The overarching driving question is, “What information is most valuable to someone involved in the care of COVID-19 patients?”

In general, the following types of references were usually included unless reasons for exclusion existed:

  • Evidence-based documents or guidelines for intervention or treatment
  • Clinical trials
  • Systematic reviews and meta-analyses
  • Case studies/reports with unique or significant findings
  • Ontario- or Canada-specific analysis
  • High-quality narrative reviews
  • High-quality expert opinion or consensus

Exclusion Criteria

Few strict exclusion criteria were applied. As above, our assessment of references was more qualitative than quantitative.

Absolute exclusion criteria:

  • Full text not in the English language
  • Full text not available via open-access source or institutional login

Moderate exclusion criteria:

  • Poorly referenced or highly subjective with limited contributions to clinical practice
  • Case reports/studies with no unique findings
  • News articles
  • Explanation of journal responses to COVID-19
  • Relevant only to overseas/international settings

Screening and Tagging Methods

References are independently screened via title/abstract review by two or more reviewers each. The full text is referenced if needed to make a proper decision. Inclusion conflicts are resolved by group consensus or a third reviewer when necessary. Reference type, specialties of interest, and other meta-data are recorded and merged. Dates are not necessarily date of publication; they are obtained with a separate process and refer to the PubMed index date. We update this website with newly included references on a regular basis.

Webtool Implementation

This fully open-source tool has been written in Shiny in R. Source code, data, and acknowledgements are available at Interested in contributing? Contact: jasper.ho (at)


This tool is a work in progress. It was also developed by a non-professional. It relies on online data from PubMed parsed from official tools, with custom code or public libraries. As such, there may be occasional errors. Please do not rely on any specific data found on this online tool without appropriate confirmation from the source. Errors may include:

  • publication date (often incomplete or in varied formats on PubMed)
  • relevant specialties (determined by title/abstract review, may not fully capture all applications)

As we continually review and process the literature in sequential order, oldest to newest, we will continue to add included publications. Past updates are:

  • August 5, 2020 (N=5609, 20.13% included)
  • August 1, 2020 (N=5524, 20.38% included)
  • July 29, 2020 (N=5459, 20.53% included)
  • July 26, 2020 (N=5347, 20.94% included)
  • July 22, 2020 (N=5256, 21.26% included)
  • July 19, 2020 (N=5122, 21.57% included)
  • July 14, 2020 (N=5008, 22.08% included)
  • July 11, 2020 (N=4839, 22.25% included)
  • July 8, 2020 (N=4706, 22.58% included)
  • July 5, 2020 (N=4621, 22.74% included)
  • July 3, 2020 (N=4578, 22.90% included)
  • July 1, 2020 (N=4502, 23.18% included)
  • June 29, 2020 (N=4355, 23.62% included)
  • June 25, 2020 (N=4246, 23.78% included)
  • June 24, 2020 (N=4140, 24.08% included)
  • June 21, 2020 (N=3942, 23.82% included)
  • June 20, 2020 (N=3883, 23.88% included)
  • June 17, 2020 (N=3808, 23.98% included)
  • June 14, 2020 (N=3596, 24.00% included)
  • June 12, 2020 (N=3510, 24.32% included)
  • June 10, 2020 (N=3391, 24.79% included)
  • June 9, 2020 (N=3199, 24.68% included)
  • June 6, 2020 (N=3049, 25.10% included)
  • June 5, 2020 (N=2998, 25.15% included)
  • June 3, 2020 (N=2905, 24.74% included)
  • June 1, 2020 (N=2840, 24.93% included)
  • May 30, 2020 (N=2797, 24.96% included)
  • May 28, 2020 (N=2686, 24.69% included)
  • May 26, 2020 (N=2619, 24.75% included)
  • May 23, 2020 (N=2530, 24.69% included)
  • May 22, 2020 (N=2429, 24.71% included)
  • May 20, 2020 (N=2386, 24.76% included)
  • May 18, 2020 (N=2333, 25.02% included)
  • May 17, 2020 (N=2293, 25.16% included)
  • May 15, 2020 (N=2216, 25.60% included)
  • May 13, 2020 (N=2116, 25.46% included)
  • May 10, 2020 (N=1910, 25.39% included)
  • May 6, 2020 (N=1783, 25.15% included)
  • May 4, 2020 (N=1665, 25.76% included)
  • May 1, 2020 (N=1586, 26.18% included)
  • April 29, 2020 (N=1534, 26.25% included)
  • April 27, 2020 (N=1432, 26.77% included)
  • April 25, 2020 (N=1318, 26.99% included)
  • April 23, 2020 (N=1281, 28.72% included)
  • April 21, 2020 (N=1186, 30.46% included)
  • April 20, 2020 (N=1154, 30.90% included)
  • April 19, 2020 (N=1091, 31.48% included)
  • April 18, 2020 (N=1066, 31.75% included)
  • April 15, 2020 (N=966, 32.58% included)
  • April 14, 2020 (N=827)
  • April 13, 2020 (N=659)
  • April 12, 2020 (N=537)

Our search is ongoing as new literature emerges. Our internal repository of unfiltered articles has been updated on the following dates:

  • August 4, 2020 (N=36880)
  • July 22, 2020 (N=33508)
  • July 14, 2020 (N=31406)
  • July 8, 2020 (N=29396)
  • July 1, 2020 (N=27807)
  • June 23, 2020 (N=24943)
  • June 17, 2020 (N=22397)
  • June 10, 2020 (N=20859)
  • June 3, 2020 (N=18085)
  • May 27, 2020 (N=16128)
  • May 20, 2020 (N=14360)
  • May 13, 2020 (N=11464)
  • May 6, 2020 (N=9163)
  • April 29, 2020 (N=7649)
  • April 15, 2020 (N=4298)
  • April 8, 2020 (N=3288)
  • March 28, 2020 (N=1890)


We are proud to collaborate with and contribute to various COVID-19-related resource hubs and networks.

COVID-19 resource hub, McMaster Textbook of Internal Medicine

COVID Critical Care, William Osler Health System


Behind – How McMaster Medical Students Created an Evidence-Based Medicine Database to Aid in the Fight against COVID-19, CanadiEM, June 4 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically changed how physicians practice medicine worldwide and has created a wide information gap as clinicians struggle to integrate the immense volume of new research into their practice.

Separating fact from fiction: McMaster students, Toronto physician earn international praise for online tools, HealthyDebate, May 5 2020

Separating facts and sound advice from lies and conspiracy theories has become a non-stop challenge for health care workers on the COVID-19 frontline. To help them, medical students at McMaster University and a Canadian emergency medicine podcaster have come up with two internationally acclaimed digital resources.

All COVID-19 evidence in one place, McMaster Textbook of Internal Medicine, April 14 2020

COVID-19 Literature Review will be particularly useful for those trying to sort through the numerous recently published articles in search of papers containing original patient data.